Spanish maritime action ship ‘Meteoro’ is participating in operation ‘Atalanta’ as of last August and has recently carried out a series of Maritime Interdiction Operations (MIO) with personnel from the Tanzanian Navy as part of the collaboration endeavor of EUNAVFOR with local navies.
The participants attended two briefings. The first one was delivered by the ship’s Commanding Officer, Lt.-Cdr Juan Carlos Pérez and dealt with the Spanish Navy’s (and other European navies) contribution to operation ‘Atalanta’; the second briefing was about general aspects and security regulations of MIO exercises.
The first stage of the exercise consisted in challenging a (simulated) merchant ship with a subsequent VBSS (visit, board, search seizure) operation. During the execution of the exercise, personnel from the Tanzanian Navy were also part of the VBSS team.
This collaboration drills enhance the mutual understanding between EUNAVFOR and regional naval forces. Combined trainings contribute to operation in a coordinated way and encourage maritime security in the area.
Once the exercise was over, the ‘Meteoro’ received a visit of the Spanish Ambassador in Tanzania, Luis Manuel Cuesta, who was welcomed by the ship’s commander. After greeting the officers and non-commissioned officers he was shown around the offshore patrol boat and briefed on her capabilities and the activities carried out to date.
Press Release, November 21, 2013; Image: Spanish Navy